Migrant Butchers Working Seasonally In Iceland

Migrant Butchers Working Seasonally In Iceland

Photos by
GAS

Published November 24, 2014

Every year, several dozen butchers commute from provincial New Zealand to rural Iceland – for just two months’ work, reports the BBC.

As work commutes go, the journey takes some beating, roughly 22,300km (about 13,850 miles) each way.

The roughly 30 butchers travel to Iceland for the lamb processing season, which begins each September.

“My friends say ‘Iceland? What do you kill there – seals?’ Nah, they’ve got their own breed of sheep,” said Shawn Parkinson who has made the trip for the past seven years. “We’d be out of work if we stayed in New Zealand at this time of year. It’s off-season. We’re laid off.”

Flights and accommodation are paid by their Icelandic bosses – who struggle to find trained locals for just eight weeks’ work – and the wages are similar to those found in New Zealand.

The chain – as a production line is called in the meat industry – runs from 07:30 in the morning until 18:00, five days a week with a few half-Saturdays.

Parkinson’s Icelandic boss, Gunnar Halldórsson, says the expense of flying in slaughterhouse specialists is worth it.

The season is too short – and the factories too remote – for Iceland’s butchers to be prepared to relocate. And to train locals from scratch takes too long.

“So it’s better for us to have butchers who do this all day so we can get up to full speed quick,” said Gunnar. “Also it is a quality issue to have professional butchers,” he says.


News
Police Still Getting Guns

Police Still Getting Guns

by

The highly disputed machine guns, recently acquired from Norway, only to be returned, will be replaced with weaponry from elsewhere, says the National Comissioner of the Icelandic Police (NCIP). This was reported today, Wednesday. In a response to inquiries made by RÚV, NCIP said that estimates made within the police, have shown that their need for weapons has increased in recent years. New weapons will be acquired, this time with the direct involvement of the Ministry of the Interior. The MP5 machine guns from Norway are to be returned because of disputes between the two countries as two whether they

News
Doctors’ Strike Will Hit Harder In 2015

Doctors’ Strike Will Hit Harder In 2015

by

Representatives of the Medical Doctors’s Union (LÍ) met with the State’s negotiation committee on Tuesday, at the Public Mediator’s office. At the meeting, LÍ’s spokespeople announced their plans for strikes in 2015, which members of the Union will vote on next week. This was reported by mbl.is. Speaking with mbl.is, Þorbjörn Jónsson, LÍ’s Chair, said that any strike actions in the new year would hit harder than what has been witnessed during the last month, and that doctors would strike for four days a week. There would be no breaks from the strike action. Þorbjörn said that according to current

News
QuizUp To Become Social Media Platform

QuizUp To Become Social Media Platform

by

Startup software developer Plain Vanilla, which last year found major success with the smartphone game QuizUp, has announced its plans to turn the game into a social media platform. The original QuizUp has been described as “a mobile trivia app similar to the game Trivial Pursuit”. “We no longer look at QuizUp as a game for smartphones but as a social network that can affect people’s lives all over the world, and create more value for the company,” said Plain Vanilla’s founder and CEO, Þorsteinn B. Friðriksson, interviewed by Vísir. Þorsteinn said that the idea came from emails that Plain

News
European Writers’ Council Concerned Over Book Tax

European Writers’ Council Concerned Over Book Tax

by

The European Writers’ Council (EWC) has expressed “deep concern” about the Icelandic government’s plans to raise the VAT on books from 7% to 12%. In a statement released at the council’s annual general assembly, EWC says it sees the raise as “devastating to the small Icelandic book market,” and predicts it “will have painful and irreversible effects on authors, publishers, booksellers, and on the reading culture of a nation known throughout the world for its rich and diverse literary heritage.” The statement further points out the example of “your neighbouring countries like Norway, the United Kingdom, Ireland and the Faroe

News
Julien Blanc Workshop Probably Canceled

Julien Blanc Workshop Probably Canceled

by

A three-day “Dating” Bootcamp by controversial Pick Up Artist, Julien Blanc, due to be held in Iceland next year, has most likely been cancelled, reports Vísir. The workshop – as well as a course planned in Sweden – has been removed from the overall schedule on organiser Real Social Dynamics’ website. As reported, news of Blanc’s course in Iceland prompted mass protest from the public with over 11.000 people signing an online petition to stop Blanc from entering the country. Icelandic comedian and cartoonist, Hugleikur Dagsson, proposed an alternative approach, saying the country should welcome him rather than martyr him, then

News
Northern Lights Movie Released

Northern Lights Movie Released

by

The film, Aurora Iceland, featuring 3 years worth of time-lapsed aurora borealis footage has been released on VOD. As reported, three independent filmmakers spent over 130 nights over 3 years in 50 different locations across Iceland taking time-lapse sequences of northern lights with 50,000 individual High Resolution RAW images. Each second of the film is equal to approximately 3-5 minutes of real time. “In our opinion it is not enough to just catch beautiful aurora displays of all shapes and colours,” said film maker Snorri Þór Tryggvason who shot the film alongside his day job. “Each frame had to look

Show Me More!